Decorating your Christmas tree signals the start of the holiday season. Whether you prefer a small, modern, or elaborate tree, almost every Christmas tree is incomplete without ornaments. But did you know those festive holiday ornaments create waste?
Many ornaments are made from plastic and other synthetic materials. Some are also coated with glitter. Not only do these materials wreak havoc on the environment during production, but they continue to pollute the planet after they’re sent to the landfill. Glitter in particular contains microplastics that aren’t biodegradable, and it’s especially harmful to aquatic life if it enters waterways.
The most sustainable option when it comes to decorating your tree is reusing decorations you already have. Trimming your tree with ornaments from your childhood keeps holiday traditions alive, adding a nostalgic element to your holiday decor.
But what if you’re decorating your first Christmas tree? Or what if your sparse tree could use more ornamentation? Making DIY Christmas ornaments is far more sustainable than buying store-bought options—especially when you use materials you already have on hand.
Ready to deck the halls? Here are some DIY Christmas ornaments you can make for a one-of-a-kind (and eco-friendly!) tree.
10 Eco-Friendly DIY Christmas Ornaments
Have an empty spool of thread lying around? Use it to create this adorable Christmas list ornament. It’s even more fun because unlike a store-bought option, you can customize the list to say whatever you want.
What’s more low-waste than DIY Christmas ornaments you can eat? These gingerbread man cookies aren’t just adorable on your tree—they also provide a delicious holiday snack as you walk by.
If you love rustic decor, it doesn’t get better than these easy-to-make twig DIY Christmas ornaments. All you need to do is pick up some sticks outside and tie them together with twine.
With some walnuts and a bit of gold paint, you can make a collection of gilded walnut ornaments. Inspired by Victorian-era ornaments, these decorations are easy and fun to make. They’re sure to make your Christmas tree shine!
If you have extra Mason jars lying around, use the ring around the lid to make simple wreath ornaments. You can wrap the lids in anything you have available—string, ribbon, or extra cloth works great.
These mini rosehip wreaths are the ultimate all-natural ornament. They’re pet-friendly, and you can compost them at the end of the season. They’re made with hard rosehips, a needle, and wire.
If you want extra-unique DIY Christmas ornaments, salt dough ornaments allow you to make any shape or size you want. These ornaments are great if you have something specific in mind or want to personalize your tree. All you need is salt, flour, and salt—and some good ideas! Plus, this DIY is kid-friendly, so you can get the whole family together to create a masterpiece.
Instead of buying plastic, glittery pine cones, these DIY Christmas ornaments use real pine cones, salt, and flour. They won’t cost you a dime, and they’re an eco-friendly addition to any tree.
Have extra fabric or worn-out clothing on hand? Use it to create these adorable DIY Christmas ornaments. You can use cookie cutters to get festive shapes, like a snowman, moose, or snowflake. Then, sew the pieces together and stuff them with leftover fabric.
One person’s trash is another person’s treasure—or DIY Christmas decoration. Start collecting old K-cups or single-use coffee pods to get started on these easy-to-make ornaments. You can wash them out to create mini Christmas bells. Just skip the glitter to keep them eco-friendly!
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